We have received a lot of interest in our latest product, announced last week: XAPP Content Discoveries. When we first built XAPPmedia, we looked at it as an interactive audio platform. It allows consumers to speak to engage with mobile audio and automatically execute actions on mobile devices – hands free and eyes free. Our first product, Interactive Audio Ads addressed the challenge of mobile audio monetization straight on. Since launching, we have seen ad conversion rates that far exceed anything radio has produced in its nearly 100-year history.
Interactive Audio Content Discoveries leverage the platform even further. Instead of advertisers generating engagement for their offers, publishers can use the platform to promote their audio content libraries. Publisher economics are driven by the number of listeners, their frequency of listening, and the average listening-session length. It is important to capture new listeners, but the obvious question then is, “What are you doing to expose listeners to your content assets and how are you enhancing their connection to your unique content offerings?” And this is not just a publisher’s concern. It provides a whole new set of opportunities for advertisers. First, let’s explore the publisher’s perspective.
Making the Content Portfolio Accessible
Most audio publishers spend a lot of time and resources creating, acquiring or packaging content that will delight their target audiences. That can be curated music channels, talk/podcast segments, live performances, etc. It’s one thing for an algorithm to force a piece of content in front of a listener, it’s another for that content to be presented and having the listener choose to engage with it.
In our work with NPR, content discovery is pretty simple for listeners on mobile devices. Between standard audio segments, a short promo highlighting the content is played. NPR’s Ted Radio Hour, Snap Judgment and Newscast segments are all examples. After the 10 to 30-second promo – although these can be any length – listeners are offered an opportunity to say “Play Next” to listen to that content, immediately. If they ignore it, they simply get served the content that was already queued up based on the programming or algorithm. If they are intrigued, they get exposed to new content instantly that they might never have found on their own. Think of it as prompted discovery.
As NPR’s Bryan Moffett commented to Mobile Marketer this week, “When we launched XAPP for sponsorship [XAPP Ads], we wanted to also use this same technology to power a user-centric feature. It is our perspective that using this same technology to promote content would increase user engagement with more media within our ecosystem and improve engagement with the XAPP sponsorship.” The results validate this hypothesis. As Inside Radio reported from an Advertising Week panel last week that included XAPPmedia and NPR, “Some content response rates have hit 13% by voice commands.”
Enhancing the User Experience
We spend a lot of time thinking about user experience for audio content consumption on mobile devices. Whether it is advertising or content discovery, we want to help publishers provide a user experience that is simple, spontaneous and convenient. Or as Business Insider put it, our goal is “…a new type of mobile ad that’s so intuitive, they can’t believe it doesn’t already exist.”
If we can reduce the friction between a listener and exposure to new publisher content, we have succeeded in improving the user experience and making the content more valuable. This has the potential to improve listener satisfaction and listening time, simultaneously. Both are desirable outcomes for publishers.
What about Advertisers
Advertisers are not left out in this equation. We have already seen advertiser interest in associating their brands with high quality content. If they advertise within a content segment, content discovery can help drive larger addressable audiences. Some publishers also allow advertisers to sponsor content channels or affiliate in other ways that enhance their brand exposure. The consumer engagement with content can translate directly into engagement with a brand.
XAPP Content Discovery and XAPP Ads are about prompted discovery that drives consumer engagement and conversion. Since we know from user data that most audio content on mobile is consumed when the screen is not visible, the option to engage by voice is essential. Consumers simply speak to access the content or the brand offer. There is no need to unlock the screen and bring the app to the foreground. It all happens by voice. XAPP Ads improve the value of ad inventory because of the higher measurable conversion rates, while Content Discoveries increase the value of content inventory by helping build audience. You can learn more about XAPP Content Discovery here.
XAPPmedia Launches Interactive Audio Content Promos for Internet Radio Publishers & Advertisers
Mobile Marketer on XAPPmedia: “The XAPP technology has boosted engagement with both NPR’s sponsorship units and promos.”
The NPR One App: Infinite News, Education, Stories, XAPP